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Surveys find that despite economic challenges Malagasy fishers support fishing regulations
Date:2/19/2014

Scientists from the Wildlife Conservation Society, the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, and other groups have found that the fishing villages of Madagascara country with little history of natural resource regulationare generally supportive of fishing regulations, an encouraging finding that bodes well for sustainable strategies needed to reduce poverty in the island nation.

Specifically, Malagasy fishers perceive restrictions on certain kinds of fishing gear as being beneficial for their livelihoods, according to the results of a survey conducted with fishers in 24 villages across the island. Conversely, fishers are less supportive of protected areas and restrictions on species; the results highlight both strengths as well as weaknesses to be addressed in future fisheries management plans.

The paper appears in the latest edition of Ecology and Society. The authors are: Tim McClanahan, Caroline Abunge, and Norbert Andrianarivielo of the Wildlife Conservation Society; Joshua Cinner of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies; Ando Rabearisoa of Conservation International; and Paubert Mahatante and Frederick Ramahatratra of the University of Toliara.

"The support for personal benefits and perceived sustainability from the island's fishing communities was significant and widespread, good news as management plans are implemented for Madagascar's fisheries," said Dr. Tim McClanahan, Senior Conservation Scientist for the Wildlife Conservation Society and lead author of the paper. "The survey results seem to run counter to assumptions that poor fishers with no history of government regulation would be resistant to most types of fisheries management."

The fishing villages of Madagascar have little input from the national government on the management of natural resources, a reality that make local-level governance and enforcement a critical part of a plan to implement a network of marine protected a
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Contact: John Delaney
jdelaney@wcs.org
718-220-3275
Wildlife Conservation Society
Source:Eurekalert  

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